The Good Life France

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The perils of not speaking French and Churchill the pinscher

After we got Winston the cat and decided that I really like cats and my other half Mark really likes dogs we decided that one more animal wouldn’t make any difference – like you do!

Mark was keen on a “big dog”. I didn’t really want that as I’ve always been afraid of dogs since as a kid, the stray dogs my Mum and Dad were always bringing home were never quite normal and I’d been bitten a few times. But Mark can be very persuasive and when he saw a tiny puppy in a glass cage in a pet shop in Boulogne labelled “pinscher” it was fate as far as he was concerned. The puppy had apparently been in the shop for several weeks and was now at a knock-down price. Mark convinced me that the poor animal was not wanted and may suffer a terrible fate.  Buying a dog in France is pretty easy, you have to provide your address details, sign up to a register, pay your money and off you go.

The puppy was scared and very cute and even though I knew that Doberman Pinschers could be big dogs I wasn’t worried at that stage, until I looked them up on the Internet and saw just how big they could be, but it was too late then, the puppy was ours.

As it turns out, my fear was unfounded. When we received his registration card in the post I found out that “Pinscher” which the dog had been labelled didn’t actually mean Doberman Pinscher. Or at least it didn’t in this case, we had a German Pinscher, an altogether different type of animal, a small dog in fact.  Not only that, he was crossed with a Jack Russell another small dog. Fully grown he’ll be really quite miniature.  As Mark’s French language skills were not of the highest quality at that time he’d not understood any of the French wording apart from “Pinscher”!

Churchill the German pinscher has turned out to be a loving, affectionate and intelligent small dog, he knows everyone in the village where I live and is universally liked. Even Winston the cat was charmed by him. His name seems to provoke a bit of interest (they pronounce it Shurshill here) and one of our neighbours does a rather odd Churchill impression with a pretend cigar every time he sees us with Churchill, he may do it when the dog’s on his own too, I’m not sure!

The problem was, Mark still wanted a big dog ….

Ella Fitzgerald arrives…
Frank Bruno makes an entrance… 

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